By Sandra Dempsey Post
We go from the “most wonderful time of the year” to what some believe is the longest time of the year and it all happens within a month. Many people welcome December with great enthusiasm and a wish to make the month last even longer. They enjoy the shopping, even if it’s just window-shopping, and the merriment that fills life in December. Other folks aren’t as sold on the excitement. The reasons are many and often very personal. But regardless, December ends and we’re on to a New Year and the beginning of January. Lots of people aren’t delighted by the cold and snow, while others find it absolutely enchanting. Perhaps we can make a decision this year to examine what it is that we don’t like about the month and learn to adapt. The snow and cold aren’t going away no matter how much we complain so we might focus our abilities to at least try to adjust to the inevitable.
Some folks look forward to the continued good food that goes past Christmas and on to January. The bright lights are still glowing, and some sales began before Santa even had a chance to get home and settle in for that long winter’s nap. It seems sometimes as though we live from one event to another without taking adequate time to enjoy the present. Some families have hauled the Christmas tree to the curb before other families have even started celebrating Christmas because of conflicting work schedules, travel, vacation time, etc. Maybe we can resolve this year, whatever the season, to go slower, enjoy more, and be thankful for all good things that have happened.
Yes, of course, sadness and disappointment, illness, and mishaps are still part of our lives, but we can strive for better coping skills and finding more positive than negative situations. “How do you make that happen,” asks more than one disappointed person. It takes practice and vision and a willingness to see with brighter eyes. Our world and the people in it have flaws and challenges, and we sometimes have to work very hard to bring peace and love just to our home or neighborhood. But it can be done, and sometimes it starts first with us.
“I think we’re asked to face what we’re given, no matter how difficult, and to accept that life is always more than the moment we find ourselves in.” Mark Nepo
Remember when people used to make New Year’s resolutions? We don’t hear much about that in today’s fast-paced world. Now adults and children are involved in upgrading their various electronic devices, ordering clothes, shoes, decorations, and even furniture online to arrive at their front door two or three days later. But sometimes it’s so much fun to go back to a tradition that once was and revisit it. One year of resolutions may be all we’re interested in, but why not give it a try. I remember doing them as a teenager and young adult. My most challenging resolution typically had something to do with losing weight, and some years I was successful, and other years I barely made it through the first week. Weight loss isn’t on my list currently, for which I’m grateful, but one success is typically replaced by another challenge.
Thanks to a group of wonderful friends I went to high school with, who I asked to list a couple of their resolutions for the coming year, I can share some of their suggestions. Perhaps you’ve been down this road before and while you don’t care to join in, reading of others’ plans is sweet and nostalgic and may even encourage you to think of a couple for yourself.
One person is resolving to “take care of myself in the best way possible, which means keeping healthy in 2023.” Another wants “to live in the present in a more positive way.” One friend says, “I have a permanent resolution to never make resolutions. They always turn around and bite me. Do your best each day and you’ll be good.” Another says, “For 2023, I have resolved to fight my corrective tissue disease by going to the YMCA and walking as much as possible to strengthen my legs. This will also help my left knee that was recently replaced. Hopefully I will get stronger for 2023.” Says another, “I want to be more prayerful. In my ‘old’ age, I realize how much more important prayer is. Also I need to lose weight. That’s always been a resolution that lasts for a while.” My five respondents are in their early 70s and are female. And while I didn’t know what their resolutions were back in the day, I’m thinking it was more about cosmetic and perhaps more frivolous details than about health issues, living in a more positive way, or the realization of the importance of prayer. Time does have a way of changing one’s perspective.
And so we move on with the New Year wondering how the Christmas season flew by so quickly. Before January is even enjoyed and appreciated, swimming suits, shorts, the lightest of summer clothing, and candy for Valentine’s Day make its appearance. For those who love bargains, move quickly as the prices are typically bargain surprises and sometimes it’s amazing the markdown of prices. But always remember, unless you genuinely need the item, or plan to give it to someone, it’s not really a bargain. It’s just one more thing to pack away for next year and start that ongoing accumulation of items.
Happy New Year to all, and Best Wishes for a beautiful season of winter weather! And remember, Daylight Saving time begins March 12th, and Spring is March 20th! Let the planning begin!
And if, when it is all over I am asked, what I did with my life—I want to be able to say—”I offered love.” Whispers of Positivity
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